Renewables/GOES MMI: LG Energy Solution inks six-year supply deal for cobalt, nickel

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The Renewables Monthly Metals Index (MMI) held flat for this month’s reading.

September 2021 Renewables MMI chart

(Editor’s note: This report also includes the MMI for grain-oriented electrical steel, or GOES.)

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LG Energy Solution signs cobalt, nickel access deal

Last month, LG Energy Solution announced it had signed an agreement that will give it access to nickel and cobalt supply from Australian Mines Ltd.

“LG Energy Solution has secured 100% rights to battery-grade nickel and cobalt materials from Australian Mines Limited amid growing concerns about future supplies of raw materials,” LG said.

“LG Energy Solution announced Monday it has entered into a binding long form offtake agreement with Australian Mines Ltd. for nickel and cobalt, which will be supplied in the form of mixed hydroxide precipitate (MPH) from the Sconi Project in North Queensland.”

The battery maker will have access to 71,000 tonnes of nickel for six years starting from the end of 2024. For cobalt, the total is 7,000 tonnes.

LG said the supply of nickel and cobalt will allow it to manufacture batteries for 1.3 million “high-performance electric vehicles.”

The battery materials will come from Australian Mines’ Sconi Project, which is currently under development.

Renewable energy gains

In its Short-Term Energy Outlook released this month, the Energy Information Administration forecast continued gains in power generation from renewable sources in the coming year.

The EIA forecast the share of power generation from natural gas to average 35% this year and 34% in 2022. That compares with 39% in 2020.

Meanwhile, generation from renewable sources is likely to fill that gap.

“The share of natural gas as a generation fuel also declines through 2022 because of expected increases in generation from renewable sources,” the EIA reported.

The EIA forecast the share of power generation from renewables to remain at 20% in 2021. However, that figure is forecast to jump to 22% in 2022.

On the other hand, coal’s percentage is forecast to rise from 20% in 2020 to 24% in 2021 and 2022.

Fortescue to announce new emissions goals toward 2030 target

Australian iron ore miner Fortescue Metals Group recently released its fiscal year 2021 results, in which it offered an update on its efforts toward carbon neutrality.

Earlier this year, the firm announced it aims to reach carbon neutrality by 2030.

“Fortescue Future Industries (FFI), a wholly owned subsidiary of Fortescue, will be a key enabler of this target through the development of green electricity, green hydrogen and green ammonia projects in Australia,” the group said in March.

Fortescue CEO Elizabeth Gaines said the group will announce new goals to achieve its emissions targets this month.

“The establishment of Fortescue Future Industries during the year underpinned our industry leading target to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030,” Gaines said. “FFI will be a key enabler of this target through a forward-looking approach to ensuring our capital investments in decarbonisation are aligned with strategic decisions such as fleet renewal.

“As we execute on our strategy to become a global leader in the battle against climate change we will establish goals to tackle emissions across our value chain, with specific targets, and a framework for our approach to Scope 3 emissions, to be announced by 30 September 2021.”

GOES MMI

The GOES MMI, the index tracking grain-oriented electrical steel, ticked up by 1.6% for this month’s reading.

September 2021 GOES MMI chart

 

The GOES coil price rose by 1.4% month over month to $2,550 per metric ton.

Actual metals prices and trends

The Japanese steel plate price fell 0.4% month over month to $799 per metric ton as of Sept. 1.

Meanwhile, the Korean steel plate price rose 0.8% to $1,077 per metric ton. The Chinese steel plate price dropped 4.2% to $907 per metric ton.

U.S. steel plate jumped 5.8% to $1,643 per short ton.

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